The Metaverse Will Be a Multi-Platform Mess
As technology continues to advance at a rapid pace, the concept of the metaverse has gained considerable traction. The metaverse is essentially a collective virtual shared space where users can interact with each other in a three-dimensional environment. Think Second Life, but on a much grander scale.
However, as the hype around the metaverse grows, there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed: the metaverse is going to be a multi-platform mess. In other words, different companies and organizations are developing their own versions of the metaverse using different standards and technologies, leading to interoperability issues.
To understand this, think of it this way. You own an iPhone, and your friend owns an Android device. You can communicate with your friend via text message or a phone call, but they can’t use iMessage or FaceTime without having an Apple device. The same scenario could play out in the metaverse, except it could be much worse.
Currently, there is a lack of consensus on what the metaverse should be and what technology should be used to build it. Some companies are building their own metaverse platforms, such as Facebook’s Horizon Workrooms or Roblox’s virtual world. These platforms will have their own set of rules, guidelines, and protocols. Suppose you’re on Facebook’s version of the metaverse, but your friend is on Roblox’s version. In that case, you won’t be able to interact with each other because the platforms are not compatible.
Furthermore, even within a single platform, there could be interoperability issues. For example, suppose you’re playing a game within a metaverse platform. In that case, you might need to purchase a specific virtual item to access certain areas of the game. But if you switch to a different platform, you might need to buy another virtual item to access the same areas of the game.
The stakes are high because the metaverse could be the next big thing in the tech industry. It could open up vast opportunities for businesses and consumers alike. However, if interoperability issues persist, the metaverse could become a fragmented and inaccessible space rather than a global shared experience.
So what’s the solution? It’s a complicated issue that requires collaboration and compromise between all the players involved. Standardization and interoperability should be the top priorities for platform developers. To achieve these goals, companies could use open-source technologies, which allow developers to share code and work together to develop universal standards.
Another solution could be the creation of a governing body, similar to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The W3C is a consortium that creates standards for the web to ensure the web’s interoperability, usability, and accessibility. The metaverse could benefit from a similar organization that creates universal standards across different platforms and technologies.
In conclusion, the metaverse has the potential to revolutionize how we interact with each other, but it won’t happen without some hiccups. The metaverse’s future is still uncertain, and many details need to be ironed out before it becomes a reality. However, if companies can work together to solve the interoperability issues, the metaverse could become a seamless, open, and accessible space for all.